Police have charged a 38-year-old man with sexual assault and abduction after a young girl was targeted in a shocking incident in Welling.

The victim, aged 11, was allegedly walking home on Friday, April 23, when she was grabbed, forced to the ground and kissed in broad daylight by a man wearing a Christmas jumper.

Two days ago, the Met Police released an appeal to the public to help identify a prime suspect, with CCTV also released of the man walking in the area.

Met Police CCTV released as part of an appeal on April 28

Met Police CCTV released as part of an appeal on April 28

The girl was on her way to a dance class on April 23 when, at around 4:20pm, she passed the junction of Maxwell Road, DA16.

She was approached by the man who grabbed her and tried to force her to the ground and kiss her.

This resulted in the victim suffering visible scratches to her neck.

The victim managed to escape the suspect and ran home. On route she phoned her brother to tell him what had happened and her mother was also informed.

Met Police

Met Police

Detectives from the South East Safeguarding team are leading the investigation, and the girl and her family are being supported by specially trained officers.

Met Police said they understand incidents of this nature are both "shocking and concerning for the local community," and patrols in the area have increased.

And on Thursday, April 23, a 38-year-old suspect was arrested following an investigation into the incident.

Matthew Cole, of Abbey Wood, SE2 was charged on Friday, 30 April with two counts of sexual assault on a child and two counts of child abduction.

He is due to appear in custody at Bromley Magistrates’ Court on Friday, 30 April.